tv Public Affairs CSPAN January 1, 2013 1:00pm-5:00pm EST
freezes for congressional pay on six different occasions. regrettably, however, this legislation continues the concerning trend throughout the 112th congress of attempting to address deficit reduction on the backs of middle income workers in the federal government. again by attacking their take-home pay. these are the dedicated folks who work at our v.a. hospitals. they protect our borders. . they run the research facilities and cure deadly disease and they provide services to the defense department, the state department. so these are the people that are doing the hard work, and this is not a way to repay them. again, they are already in the second year of a 2 1/2-year pay freeze. i agree that that pay freeze should apply to me and other members of congress.
however, these hardworking federal employees should not be asked to carry even more of this burden. i thank the gentleman for yielding, and i yield back the balance of my time. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the gentleman from california. mr. issa: mr. speaker, i know my friend from virginia means well, but once again he talks about a lack of accomplishment. apparently he has not looked at the work that the clerks did. he hasn't done the work that the congressional budget office or the government accountability office. those are all funded and yet we had an 11% reduction in spending. so in fact when we talk about the hardworking men and women of the government, this branch has found a way to reduce spending by over 11% in spite of the hardworking men, not just here on the floor and in our offices, but the government accountability office and the c.b.o. and others. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. connell -- the gentleman from
virginia. mr. connolly: before i call on the distinguished member from virginia, of course the productivity i talk about is the productivity of this legislative body, not the honorable men and women who serve us, but for us. and we passed fewer number of bills in living memory. we have been out for 15 weeks since august instead of doing the people's business. that is one of the least productive records in american history, and no words are going to change that. not in the history books and not in the minds of the american public that is showing disapproval of that productivity with the low approval ratings of this congress. i am now pleased to yield three minutes to the distinguished member from virginia, mr. moran. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia is recognized for three minutes. mr. moran: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank my very good friend who has been tireless in representing not just the interest of his constituency, but of this great country. mr. speaker, first of all --
and it may seem petty, but if it was done by the other side, it would be a big deal. this bill was dropped at about 20 past 12:00 today. and then it was brought up. now, you know, in less than an hour we drop a bill and we bring it to the floor? that's not the way to do business. the caucuses are involved in other things. the whole democratic caucus is talking with the vice president, and here we are about to do something of real consequence, not just for federal employees arched members of the congress but for the -- and members of the congress but for the country. mr. lynch and mr. connolly pointed out federal employees contributed $100 billion toward deficit reduction. they had their pay frozen for two years. this will be the third year.
new hires will have to contribute three times as much into their pension as they would have to today. so they're really being made a scapegoat. and we're doing this at a time when we're trying to compete at a global economy. now, what happens is we send a message to federal employees that if you can get out get out. we don't really appreciate what you're doing for the public sector. get into the private sector. most of you can make two or three times what you're making in the public sector. so this is a good time to go. because otherwise your families are going to have to suffer. you're not going to be able to achieve the kind of quality of life that your talents and experience and skills would merit. and we're going to continue doing this to you individually and collectively. that's not the way to run a
government. you know, we pass all these laws. we pass appropriation bills and then it's the executive branch's responsibility to carry them out. how do we think we can pass these laws and then expect people to carry these laws out with efficiency and effectiveness when we take $100 billion out of their compensation? what kind of a message does that send to the people who serve us directly and all of the american people's interests in terms of their ultimate mission? it sends all the wrong message. now, i know people don't care much about the procedural issue, but, boy, you know, what a precedent to set. mr. issa: if the gentleman will yield? mr. moran: yes. mr. issa: it was posted last night which means it was posted before the cliff bill. the technical dropping is a different rule, but it was posted so it was available to all members last night. and, of course, as you know, it's a very simple -- we simply
freeze, and that's not hard for people to understand. i hope the gentleman understands half percent freeze is all that this bill does. mr. moran: if the gentleman would yield 30 seconds he took to explain. you dropped it at new years' eave. i don't know if -- new year's eve. i don't know if that's a different distinction. nobody has focused on it. i think the gentleman who chairs government oversight and reform would have recognized -- mr. connolly: mr. speaker, i yield the gentleman 15 seconds. mr. moran: i hope the gentleman would recognize, as mr. connolly and mr. lynch recognized, there are serious risks going forward with this. i don't think the way to solve our deficit situation is to cut off our nose to spite our face. this is what we're doing. this is not fair to the federal
work force. it's not fair to the country. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from california. mr. issa: mr. speaker, as i note once again that this is half a percent that will not be increased by this action. half a percent. so on $100,000 it's $500 of a pay raise that will not occur for federal workers that in fact the sky is not falling if we choose not to have that happen this year. with that i'd like to yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from texas, mr. flores. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for a minute and a half. mr. flores: thank you, mr. speaker. our nation is on the verge of going over a fiscal cliff because washington has a spending problem. president obama still does not understand that this problem as he recently issued an executive order to most civilian employees. i believe these raises are grossly inappropriate and represent an insult to
hardworking american taxpayers. these factors have prompted me to join this legislation to halt these unnecessary salary increases. you've heard arguments today that federal workers are being victimized by this legislation. here are a few facts that will rebut that assumption. one, the income of the average american private sector family has gone down $4,000 during the last four years. number two, federal workers on average earn pay and benefits that are equal that to their private sector counterparts. number three, federal workers pay an amount into the federal retirement plan that is less than .1 that private workers pay into sex. last year hardworking american taxpayers had to subsidize about $40 billion to subsidize the unsolvency of the civil service retirement system. mr. speaker, for these reasons and the huge deficits of our federal government, i support this legislation wholeheartedly. thank you. i yield back.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from virginia. mr. connolly: mr. speaker, i want to inquire how much time remains on this side. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia has 2 3/4 minutes. the gentleman from california has 3 1/2 minutes. mr. connolly: if i may inquire, mr. speaker, does my colleague on the other side have any other speakers. mr. issa: not at this time so i would simply the right to close. mr. connolly: i'm prepared to wrap up and yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia. mr. connolly: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i'm worried about the future of the federal work force. continued denegation of public service, continued whacking away at compensation and benefits that make it an attractive career choice for so many young people is going to make it harder to recruit and retain the skilled work force of the future. and despite what my colleague just indicated, i'm not quite sure where he got his statistics, the federal salary council, which looks at federal salaries every year, concluded that federal employees in 2011
26.3% less than the private sector counterparts. and this year 34.6% less. a c.b.o. study found that people in the federal work force with a ph.d. degree earned 23% less than their private sector counterparts. if you had a bachelors degree, roughly 23% less. and only in the high school level did they actually earn more, 21% more. and so actually we got a problem. as we look at the baby boom generation getting ready to retire, 47% of the entire existing federal work force is eligible for retirement over this next decade. how will we recruit and retain that work force if we're going to continue to use them as not only a piggy bank to finance the deficit but perhaps more disgracefully as a punching bag in terms of disparagement of service? we're far, far placed away from john kennedy's call to serve
your country. mr. speaker, with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. issa: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. issa: mr. speaker, in closing, this bill is going to pass and it's going to pass likely on a bipartisan basis. because it would be the ultimate inappropriate behavior by this body to allow our pay to be raised. this is something i think that both sides have said fairly straightforward. this is not a time in which members of congress should take their $174,000 salary and increase it. i don't believe we've earned it this year. by the way, i believe the president's salary will not go up and the vice president's salary will not go up and that is also appropriate. but as we look at the hardworking men and women of the federal work force and look at my colleagues from virginia who spoke and my colleague from maryland who spoke, the point that the federal work force should be listening to today is
that in fact it's not how hard they work, it's what can the american people afford. we cannot afford to continue these deficits. it's not how hard they work. it's, is there inefficiency and waste, not just in their office, but in the way government is organized? mr. speaker, everyone had a new year's resolution, i trust, last night. for some it would be to lose a little weight, do things we haven't been doing. but for me, particularly, it is to go after the duplication in government, to go after the flaws in government that would allow us to be less critical perhaps at what we can afford from our federal work force and more proud of the fact that it is organized for efficiency. mr. speaker, in closing, the president called for reorganization authority and did nothing in his first term. it is my goal to give him reorganization and a reorganizational plan. it is my committee's obligation to do that.
and so as i vote today to freeze our pay and to freeze all of the federal workers' pay, i do so by recognizing the best way for federal workers to get a pay raise without it being on the back of the american people is for us to reorganize government, whether it's in information technology or any other goods and services that the federal government delivers. we can do better. we can take waste out of medicare and we can take waste out of all aspects of the federal government. mr. speaker, i know this bill will pass on a bipartisan basis because it's appropriate to do here today. i urge its support and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 6726. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, bams, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table -- the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. mr. issa: mr. speaker, on that i demand a recorded vote.
the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman ask for the yeas and nays? mr. issa: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those favoring taking a vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this motion are postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. issa: mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass senate bill 3662. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: senate 3662, an act to designate the facility of the united states postal service located at 6 nichols street in westminster, massachusetts, as the lieutenant ryan patrick jones post office building. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from california, mr. issa, and the gentleman from virginia, mr. connolly, each will control 20 minutes.
the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. issa: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. issa: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous materials on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. issa: mr. speaker, on this last or second of last day of this congress, the senate has sent us a naming. although my committee has stopped doing naming, accept in the case of medal of honor recipients, this one is coming over and i believe it is meritorious and the senate has asked us to pass it and i will do so today. . it would designate a facility of the united states postal service located at 6 nicholls street at westminster, massachusetts, as lieutenant ryan patrick jones post office building. lieutenant jones earned his engineering degree at worcester
polytech nique institute. when he earned his degree he also was an awarded an rotc scholarship in the reserve officer training corps. he led his fellow soldiers as a platoon leader in the army's first infantry division while employed in iraq in --deployed in iraq in 2007. i guess as a member of the big red one i would note i also served with that unit many years ago. tragically on may 2, 2007, lieutenant jones was killed in action by an improvised explosive device set by our enemy. he leaves behind his parents of westminster, massachusetts. he was awarded several awards for his heroism, including the bronze star, the purple heart, and the iraqi freedom medal. and the combat action badge. for the war on terrorism.
i am grateful for lieutenant jones' service, his bravery in the battlefield, and i regret that the naming of this post office is so appropriate because yet another one of our finest has paid such a high price by an enemy who uses hidden explosives rather than confront us in any direct way. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from virginia. mr. connolly: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. connolly: mr. speaker, i'm pleased to join with the distinguished chairman in support of s. 3662, to name a postal facility in westminster, massachusetts, as the lupet ryan patrick jones post office building. i, too, join in having to take this action because of the loss of a life. i can only hope taking this
action will provide comfort to his parents and family and his broader community given their terrible loss. we salute the honor and patriotism of mr. ryan who was commissioned second lieutenant in the u.s. army, and we honor his sacrifice and service to his country. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. issa: i also yield back and urge support. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass senate 3662. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. issa: mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass senate bill 3630. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: senate 3630, an act to designate the facility of the
united states postal service located at 218 north milwaukee street in waterford, wisconsin, as the captain rhett w. schiller post office. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from california, mr. issa, and the gentleman from virginia, mr. connolly, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. issa: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. issa: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. issa: mr. speaker, senate bill 3630 introduced by senator ron johnson of wisconsin to designate a facility of the united states postal service located at 328 north milwaukee street in waterford, wisconsin, as the captain rhett w. schiller post office is again another exception to the no postal rule.
captain schiller graduated from the u.s. military academy at west point in 2003 and was deployed to serve in iraq in 2006. tragically on november 16, 2006, the captain was killed by enemy fire. at the time of the attack, captain schiller was leading a team of six pair troopers -- paratroopers and six iraqi army soldiers. the captain leaves behind his parents. he was awarded several medals for his heroism, including the bronze star and purple heart. we are grateful for his service. we make an exception to the no postal naming rule established because we don't have postal reform, and we do so on behalf of the request of the senate and we do so for a good reason. this in fact was a gentleman who served his country who we want to remember, we want to remember him here today and in wisconsin for years to come.
i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from virginia. mr. connolly: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. connolly: i'm pleased again to join with the distinguished chairman in support of s. 3630. again we are honoring service to country. we are honoring bravery and the ultimate sacrifice by a young american captain rhett w. schiller. i think it's fitting that we do rename a post office to honor the bravery and sacrifice and again i hope to provide comfort to the friends and family members of the late captain schiller in this action. le with that will i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. issa: mr. speaker, i urge all members to vote for senate 38630, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass senate 3630. so many as are in favor say aye.
those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspend spd -- suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. for what purpose does the gentlelady from illinois seek recognition? mrs. biggert: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that the committee on financial services be discharged from further consideration of s. 3677 and ask for its immediate consideration in the house. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: senate 3677, an act
to make a technical correction to the flood disaster protection act of 1973. the speaker pro tempore: is there objection to the consideration of the bill? without objection, the bill is read a third time and passed. and a the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. pursuant to clause 12-a of rule 1, the house will stand in recess subject to the call o
representative tom cole is not in favor of amending the deal. and another tweak from a capitol hill reporter, alan cota, who works for roll call. he says, cleaver will vote for it. rep cleaver on the floor earlier today in those general morning speeches. we showed you that as we listened to members of congress and republicans and democrats alike come to the floor and say they like it. we heard a mix of comments about the deal that was brokered. is your turn to weigh in. sean in new york,, go ahead. caller: the president should just let it ride. i do not mind paying 39%.
if we were under the roosevelt years, we would be making -- pay 90%, and even at that, you can still be millionaires. the democrats won. that is it. host: you say the president should let it ride, but some democrats are upset with him because he did not stay to the tool hundred $50,000 threshold. caller: i am one of them. these guys keep sending money overseas. you make money here and you store it in china or somewhere else, you know, sweden, in swiss banks. host: brandon in ohio, republican caller. good morning. caller: i'm a republican and i'm
not very happy with the deal, but i did think the real issue is the exception that the democrats have been putting on the american people. this whole issue is not about protecting the wealthy and protecting the millionaires and billionaires in separate tax bracket -- tax bracket. i would like to retire someday and to hear that social security and medicare will be affected. we will not have the money to spend on anybody when i retire and these programs will be very adversely affected. host: when the two sides get back to that of for the 113th congress in what people are saying it is round two, senate republicans are saying no debt ceiling increase until president obama and democrats put social security and medicare on the table.
what do you think? caller: i do think we should be looking at spending cuts. if we keep in the autumn of programs where they are now, we will not have anything for anyone -- if we keep entitlement programs where they are now, we will not have anything for anyone in a few years. i agree with republicans in that. we do need to protect our country and have the military be the best it can be, but i would say we do not need to give them more money. i think that is one area where i see things differently than our republican colleagues. host: patricia, mass., independent caller. caller: i was wondering why the congress and president want to go after social security and medicaid. they are the ones that rated
that account. they took the money from it and they have not paid back yet. host: are you referring to the payroll tax holiday? caller: no, i'm talking about the way the government has rated the social security account when they took the money out -- has rataided that rated that the social security account when they took the money out and they have not replace it. i do not understand it. host: social security should not be on the table in these negotiations? caller: no, because they've already taken their share of the money. they spend it on different things and have not put it back. the seniors are getting hurt really badly. they ought to choose between food and medicine. i think they ought to take off the table and cut somewhere else. host: that will be the debate, whether or not the social security and medicare, that spending is on the table when congress reconvenes and the
113th congress gets sworn in. they will have what is being called a round two of negotiations. and right now, the senate this morning and approved a deal about what the avoid those tax hikes for a number of americans. there will have to come back and deal with the debt ceiling, which needs to be raised in security accountabout two months. at that time, the automatic spending cuts that were supposed to happen tomorrow, they will need to deal with that as well. that all will happen if the house approves what the senate did, and that remains the question this afternoon as we continue our coverage here on c- span watching the house. no. showing you livethat all cof the floor proceedings here -- we were showing you live coverage of the floor proceedings here. they went into recess, subject
to the call of the chair. which means they are trying to figure this out, too, as they go along. we will try to keep you updated from the conference meeting behind closed doors. republican and democrat leadership has been meeting since about 12:15 p.m. we will wait to see if there are enough votes to approve the senate bill, is a amend it, and what happens next. we are all waiting and watching and take your phone calls as well here are some tweet for you. you can send your comments via twitter. laura says -- and that another tweak from angelina --
and then finally, here is one from robinson -- we are taking your thoughts here. but first, senate majority leader harry reid and minority leader mitch mcconnell from last night before the vote. >> mr. president, working through the night and throughout the day, we have reached an agreement with senator mcconnell to avoid tax increases on middle class americans. i have said all along that our priority is to protect a class families and this legislation does that. middle-class families will wake up today to the assurance that their taxes will not go up $2,200 each. they will have the certainty to plan how they pay for groceries, car payments, rent, all during next year. it projects 2 million of americans who lost their jobs during the great recession from losingup today to the assurancet
insurance. i'm disappointed we were not able to make the grand bargain, as we've tried to do for so long. but we have tried. if we do nothing, the threat of a recession is very real. the passing of this agreement does not mean negotiations are at a halt. as far from it. i thank everyone for their patience today. and we have had a lot of patience. i also want to thank my friend, senator mcconnell, for his hard work in reaching this bipartisan agreement. it has been difficult work. as we have said before, senator mcconnell and i do a lot of talking to each other. and we kind of go over everybody's head. he and i know that when the talk is done, we work hard to help this country. he is my friend and i appreciate very much the work that he has done on this. for example, this bill cuts $4 billion in fiscal year, 2013 and $8 billion in fiscal year 2014.
these are real cuts. they are in this bill. i hope the new year will bring a renewed willingness on the part of republican and democrat to do the rewarding work of governing. the senate will soon act. now i hope for america that the speaker will help -- will allow the full house of ruth as additives to vote on this bipartisan legislation. -- to allow the full house to vote on this bipartisan legislation. >> i thank everyone for their patience and counsel throughout this process. i also want to thank the vice president for recognizing the importance of preventing this taxinsurance. i'm hike on the american people and stepping up to play a crucial role in getting us there. it should not have taken us this long to come to an agreement, and this should not be the model for how we do things are around here, but i appreciate the vice president's willingness to get
this done for the country. i know i can speak for my entire conference when i say i do not think taxes should be going up on anyone. but we all knew that if we did nothing, they would be going up on everyone today. we were not going to let that happen. each of us could spend the rest of the week discussing what a perfect solution would have looked like. but the end of -- the end result would have been done largest tax increase in history. thanks to this agreement, 99% of my constituents will not be hit by those hikes. it took an imperfect solution to
prevent us from seeing very real financial pain. in my view, it was worth the effort. as i said, this should not be the model for how we do things are around here, but i think i can say that we have done some good for the country. we have done some good for the country. taken care of the revenue side of this debate. now it is time to get serious about reducing washington's out of control spending. it is theprevent us from seeingl financial pain. in my view, it was worth the debate that the american people. it is the debate will have next. and it is the debate that republicans are ready for. i yield the floor. >> senator mitch mcconnell, minority leader, before the senate approved a deal on this so-called fiscal cliff. senator mcconnell negotiating with vice president joe biden late last night and coming up with a deal this morning. this is the third time that deerow has gotten together on budget issues. and they were able to come up with -- that the duo has gotten together on budget issues. they were able to come up with a
deal. people are calling this round two of the negotiations. before the vote, here is what the house gop leadership put out in a joint statement. all four republican leaders said this. the house is in recess for caucus meetings. both sides are in behind closed doors. whether or not they take it up today and vote on it remains the question as we continue our coverage on c-span of the so- called fiscal cliff talks. a tweet here for you.
democrat, republican from of our independent, needs to be thrown aside. we are in a country where a black, white, red, or yellow is said to have a problem working together. that needs to be thrown aside as well whether you are a democrat or republican does not mean that you are able to make a decision or a bad one. our deficit problem did not occur in the past four years when president obama became president. our deficit problem started with many presidents before, even back to reagan's time. and let me say this. i feel the decision that was made last night -- and mitch mcconnell said it was an imperforate decision -- in perfect decision. therefore, that tells me that
they must be so, exhausted with this. for them to address this in another month or two is not good strategy. it is like someone with cancer, for instance, and the doctor knows he's got a cancer and he will just put it on hold and address the problem later when the cancer has gotten worse. they had two years to address the problem and have waited until now it should have been addressed when it was still fresh. host: the "washington *" reports this morning how we got here.
general, farmingdale, new york, republican caller. caller: i have to agree completely with my democrat friend who just called in. this is not about a democrat issue or republican issue. we borrow 40 cents on every dollar and that is affecting our children that is -- and that is whether we are democrat or republican. we have a morality problem. and special interest in congress -- i agree, they had two years to deal with these things. this is not the first time that
this has happened. we have a morality problem prepared -- problem. reagan increase the government, bush increase the government, clinton increased the government, obama increased the government. we have more -- host: what you think will happen in the house? caller: they need to not go on holiday. they need to take the measure. and when can at the american public participate in this process? we cannot. they give us one day to read the bill.
there is no way that our people can participate in the process. we want to talk about increases in revenue. i understand that, but you have to have some kind of comeback and i do not been there needs to be some increase in spending. our defense spending is outrageous. our foreign aid to countries is outrageous. we prop up dictators. we are allies with al qaeda what we want to beat the soviet union, but then enemies with them when we want to be in afghanistan. it does have to do with entitlements, but also big government is working with big corporations prepare until the republicans want to get over the industrial military complex and democrats want to --
host: if you are interested in following along on this debate, there are several links on our website c-span.org and we also have a special fiscal cliff page c-span.org/fiscalcliff and a twitter feed where you can send in your comments as well. also, on our website, c- span.org the fiscal " cheat sheet is there. the victor in katy, texas. caller: i'm not satisfied with the bill because i do not think is going to address the problems that our nation has. number one, we are not raising revenues by getting more taxes. and we should start looking at
how we can help the economy so that manufacturing is back into the country. have somebody saying to let the taxes be proportionate to the manufacturing cost of the goods? host: we are taking your calls us today on this first day of january, 2013. we are waiting for possible house auctioned this afternoon. whether they take it up, amend it, approved it as it is, we shall see. their meeting with party leaders behind closed doors. joe biden is meeting with house democrats. we are waiting for house democrats to come to the microphone here on capitol hill. in the meantime, we will go back
to all of you. marissa in roseville, calif., democratic caller, go ahead. caller: thank you. i do agree with so many of the callers, be they democrat or republican. the bottom-line issue on his particular bill has to do with compromise. i am a senior. do i want my social security to be decreased? absolutely not, but i'm willing to give up a little bit because we all have to give up a little bit as americans. and i'm not happy with the fact that it is $250,000 or more. those who are making $250,000, that is a lot of money. they are kind of rich. but ok, i'm willing to go to $400,000 because it is about compromise. and we have to remind people that we did not get into this fix in the last two years, for
years. we got into this fix in the last 30 years. we have two wars that were unpaid for. in order to pay for things, we need to increase revenue. the wars were there. they need to be paid for. we cannot say, let's go back 10 years and not go into those wars. i would love to have that reality, but that is not the case. the reality is, those wars have to be paid for. the fact that the senate has been able to get together and make a reasonable compromise is a good thing. now the youngsters in the house how to come along. host: will be watching proceedings here on c-span. some more tweet for you.
we will continue taking your thoughts, getting your take on what the senate has done earlier today and possible action in the house. earlier this morning, we spoke to a longtime congressional reporter with the mcclatchy newspapers on the late-night and early-morning action in the senate as well as possible action in the house today. david is joining us from the mcclatchy newspaper. what is the latest? when could this vote take place? caller: -- guest: it could take place anytime from 1:00 p.m. this afternoon to 1:00 a.m. thursday morning. we just did not know. there will be a lot of
complaining about this from diehard conservatives. in the end, it will pass. the question is when it will happen. host: we are learning about the gop conference in the house, where frank and file are getting together. what do you suspect happens there? guest: i think there will be a lot of concern about tax increases. in theory, because we are going over the tax -- over the cliff, they are not tax increases anymore. it is just status quo for those earning $400,000 and $450,000. this agreement takes the can down the road another two months. it does not solve anything. they face the debt limit been reached in about a month and half. and if you want to get
complicated, the march 7 spending runs out in an agreement from last september. it is of great concern to virtually everybody in congress. host: will republicans overwhelmingly, much like they did in the senate earlier this morning, but in the house, will they live to fight another day and approve a deal? what do you think the vote will be? guest: that is tough. the two weeks ago when speaker boehner had a plan to raise taxes on those earning more than $1 million, the feeling was that he had about 190 republican votes. if the will of 190 holes, then you'll get a -- then you'll get an oath -- if the 190 holds, then you will get a majority. it again, one thing we have
learned in this game is that nothing is assured. host: now there is work to be done for this 113th congress. what is the dynamic there? guest: the democrats picked up a few seats in the senate. it is 55-45 at the moment. if john kerry is confirmed as secretary of state, then it goes to 54. democrats have a little more strength. the president gets inaugurated january 20, 21st. then we are back to fighting over the debt limit, the sequester, the continuing solutions. it goes on and on. host: give us the highlights of what was approved by the senate this morning.
guest: the bush era tax rates continue for everybody except those individuals earning over $400,000 and families earning over $450,000. they want to bring the levels back to 39.6%. in addition, several other things. the alternative minimum tax gets patched. in other words, people do not have to worry about that. medicare patients, there would have been a 27% cut in fees for those who treat medicare patients. not anymore. spending, two months -- no sequester. no automatic spending cuts and let -- until at least march birth. -- march 1.
host: we will learn more details of the senate has voted and the house possibly votes today. david, you are watching in the senate. what was it like in the chamber? guest: it was almost a mood of resignation what you saw all day, all night, nobody liked this thing. nobody liked the idea that it stretched out as long as it did. nobody likes this patch. plus, it was new year's eve. outside the capital, people were celebrating. inside the capitol, the mood was dark. host: what happens to senator mitch mcconnell, the minority
leader, his status and role in the 100th -- the 113th congress? guest: he is a deal maker. he knows how to use power like few others do in congress. in the summer of 2011, it was his deal that was eventually adopted with some changes. it is no surprise to us. he knows the parliamentary system and he is a force to be reckoned with. you need 60 votes to overcome procedural hurdles. and republicans will have at least 45 votes in the next congress. host: thing question, but this one for speaker boehner in the 113th congress. guest: that is a more interesting question and will be a.m. -- an ongoing story. typically, house speakers do best when they roll with an iron
fist. if you look at the nancy pelosi leadership, she muscled through. speaker boehner is more collegial. he believes in working things through and working slow. he had a four members tossed off various committees about a month ago. that was a sign to play ball, or else. will he be able to sustain that? we will know in the next 48 hours. host: you can tune into c-span for the full coverage of the house. they come in at noon eastern time. david, we appreciate your time. welcome back to our live coverage here on speed and -- on c-span.
the house, as they have doubled in for a session this afternoon on new year's day. it is highly unusual for congress to be back on this holiday. earlier, the senate voted to approve it brokered deal. vice-president joe biden and minority leader mitch mcconnell bought together for a third time to compromise a deal. congress can retroactively deal with a tax hikes, as well as preventing automatic spending cuts sequestration from happening. the sequestration kicks in on wednesday. that -- this deal, if the house approves it cannot --
approves it, whether they will amend it. for the rank and file to come out as well. we will bring you those events when they happen. on thist your take fiscal cliff deal. david in louisiana, republican caller. caller: i feel this bill is not really accomplishing anything. if we keep ignoring what we are doing with the tax dollars, iciest of money going to refuse -- i see this money going to a very few states and individuals. it is not stimulating manufacturing here. we are buying chinese solar
panels and trying to offset that by putting tariffs on imports. it is a big joke. i'm not speaking just on the federal approval. that is just one example. we've got to have oversight and planning. we've got to do something that will not have long-range negative impacts. we've got to control spending. it is not a democrat or republican gain. we have to be realistic about what we are spending our money on. host: marla in missouri. go ahead. caller: a couple of things. the last few callers are right. it is not a democrat or republican. it is the whole cabinet. the thing that gets me is that ronald reagan did are all the money from social security.
i am one of those people. i'm also on social security now. we used to have the silver certificates on our dollar bills. now it says federal reserve note. that was supposed to be paid back to social security. it never has been. back when i was a child and going through high school -- which i raised my my social security is not that great. the middle class people keep talking about 45,000 even when i was raising my kids back in the 70's. we only made 20 if we were lucky. if we are lucky we are getting $1,000 a month. that is 12,000 a year. they want to cut our benefits.
>> we will go to caroline. >caller: i agree with all of the previous callers. glad that we went ahead and did something. i am worried about the cutting. i do not see where we ought to cut social security. i never made over six or $7 an hour working in the workforce. i believe that we need to get a handle on spending. i think an area of spending and we can cut is the money for the arts, control of the
environment, and i think this ought to be in the justice department. host: we will go to carl. caller: i believe this is about a monopoly on the common man. when they borrow from social security and medicaid to finance these wars, that is what put us in that particular position. it was a republican president that had done it. we need to go back to realizing cuts on home? what are the cuts going to do? how will they affect the common people? how will they affect the common class? host: we will keep getting your thoughts. while we wait for democrats to come to be microphones before
that happens first from today's "washington journal" our interview with his thoughts on this deal that was approved in the early hours. >> he is the washington reporter for the nation. what do you think of this deal that was reached earlier this morning? >> what happened was one of the biggest measures the average to close the long term debt. yet the bush tax cut officially expired. you had the sequestered technically go into effect. what congress is doing now is
basically undo that deficit reduction. they will and the most of the tax cuts. they will put off the sequester. it is happening in the context of what is the real jobs crisis. they're playing these deficit games back and forth. >> not a good deal in your opinion. >> i think it is a bad deal for liberals for a few reasons. they gave significant concessions on revenue. president obama wanted to raise $1.20 trillion. he was telling liberals that they will hold firm. this is their number. nobody believes it will hold exactly. they have now come down to $620 billion. >> what has been the reaction so
far from liberal groups? >> you had a lot of the outside progressive groups organize against it. it looks like it might be affected in the senate. i am not sure that it will not be powerful. host: you do not nancy pelosi can democrat enough votes? >> we know republicans will lose some number. you have seen in the senate been betting against it. democrats may not be able to lose that much to get it passed. i have spoke to some that are looking for a reason not to vote for this. we cannot set the stage for
further destabilization hostage- taking from ours in the form of another debt ceiling crisis. but he was doing that ahead of last night's vote. this was another thing he was going to do. he didn't win it. you have done the revenue and change the estate tax. that is done. you are going into the negotiations without many avenues. there will not negotiate on the debt ceiling. sherrod brown said they were going with it. whitehouse said the same thing earlier. obama said they want an end to the high jinks.
host: what is your take on president obama's role in negotiating so far? guest: i think he has a strong impulse to reach a deal. his priorities to reaching a deal is surpassing his desire to stand up for progressive principles. to protect parts of the government from harmful cuts that would hurt a lot of regular americans. host: republicans saw his news conference as unusual.
john mccain said he should not know if he should be mad or sad. guest: the white house anticipated a lot of progress angst over this deal. they knew there would be concessions. he was trying to fire up the team, slam-dunking on republicans to make it seem like a partisan fight. i think that probably worked. john mccain complained. a lot democratic rally to the cause. host: joe biden made his way to the senate last night. do you know? guest: he allayed a lot of concerns about the debt ceiling. if republicans would refuse to
raise the debt ceiling and if obama throws down the gauntlet, i'm not sure we would not hit it. there is a lot of the senators who went into the meeting saying, we cannot go for this. host: we have a tweet. guest: i believe it will but not as much as everybody hoped. obama was asking for $1.2 trillion.
there was a major concession on the estate tax. they ended up agreeing to a $5 million cut off and a 40% taxation rate. that is a significant chunk of revenue. host: it seems republicans are nervous as well. this is a conservative blog. "it is an enigmatic riddle for you. you get tax hikes and no spending cuts. in fact, we will spend even more as a result of this deal." guest: i think democrats are coming out on the losing end. the rates have already gone up. they are essentially agreeing to a tax rate and not getting any spending cuts for it. between now and around two, they will get beat up by a lot of their members. there will be sweating through this vote today.
host: we have a tweet from bill king. thomas, you are on the air. caller: good morning. happy new year. we say that most of the politicians are looking down the road at the 2014 election. they had to vote for this because -- they put down the two month for the sequestration. that is going to affect the employment base of the entire
increase the unemployment rate. the tax-cut measure that they did. nobody making $40,000 a month needs a tax breaks. we discussed the tax thing in an earlier program. the middle class is paying for it. i didn't understand that liberals do not band together stronger and show a united force. it is okay to have obama as the president. if we say the president is caving in, we have power. guest: we have seen 26 straight months of private sector job
gains. we have seen losses in the public sector. you can expect that public unemployment problem to get worse. progressives can get behind the president and claimed a win over the republicans. or they can hold out for the progressive principles that they originally wanted. i think in congress a lot of folks will wind up back in the president. host: ok. good morning, steve. caller: happy new year. everybody is talking about going back to the clinton's tax
brackets. do you think that is a good idea? guest: go back to the 1990's and everybody did quite well. there was apocalyptic talk. it is not all that much debilitating when people tend to save the money rather than spend it. a lot of the talk about what will happen if we go back to those rates simply is not true. we saw quite a bit of economic growth. host: john from north carolina tweets in -- guest: that will be what a lot of people are going to sweat to. they are getting no spending cuts. that is a hard sell for a lot of people. they rejected a bill and told boehner that would not support a bill that pushed the tax rates
up to a million dollars. that is a win in some ways for them. host: what do you make about the statement that said the house will honor its commitment to consider the senate agreement if it is passed. host: this is a joint statement. guest: the republican bishop wants this to pass. it would be problematic if we go further over the cliff. they have a lot nervous conservative members that do not want to feel they are getting steamrolled by boehner. "we hear your concerns and are willing to listen." they are giving the conservatives time to air their grievances. host: we have this on twitter.
george from arizona. caller: hi. thank you for taking my call. the last caller made one of my points. if you're making $9,000 a week and cannot afford to pay a little bit more -- there is no sense of country anymore. everybody wants to grab what they want to grab. the taxation in this country was more than 39% when our country was in trouble in the past. anybody that can afford it needs to pay 50%, 60%, 70%. a friend of mine makes all his
money in capital gains. "it is kind of tragic you're only paying 20%." he said, i would be willing to pay more. he cannot spend all of his money. guest: historically taxation is at an all-time low. taxation is at an all-time low particularly for the wealthiest and the tea party is not acknowledging that. the effective tax rate is going down and down and down. people like to talk about the kitchen table conversation about the country's debt. you have to talk about bringing in more revenue plus whatever spending cuts if you can make without further damaging the
stream for revenue. they will be looking to make all the cuts now to address our deficits. that is the only place you can go to now. guest: i agree. members are worried about the cuts. lindsey graham is ready to ask for deep cuts. democrats will be in a tough place to turn those backed. host: this is from a column in "the washington post."
host: "obama's failure to lead" is the title of the column. guest: i have a few problems with that. he is in a tricky place on medicare and medicaid. he does not want to hurt beneficiaries. he proposed $700 billion in savings to the program that didn't hurt beneficiaries and saw mitt romney and paul ryan bash him.
he is in a tough position. in some ways obama and liberals could allow the government to negotiate drug prices under part d. that would be a significant savings. there are ways to do it. host: rick from texas. caller: good morning and happy new year. my wife and i got in severe credit card debt in 2008. i went to my boss and said, "i need a raise to pay off some of my expenses." he said, "you have not been more productive." i went to my father, a successful businessman. i asked him to bail me out.
he had a lot of money. he did not earn it. it was the people that purchased the vehicles. he used terms like "personal responsibility" and that i had to pay off my own debt. host: we got your point. guest: the economy is bad. the government has to pay out more in benefits. one way to get the government to spend less is to spend more to stimulate the economy. what obama was trying is serious stimulus to boost the economy. if you think of the federal government that is someone that
has to balance its books, that is the obama approach and i think it is a good one. host: lesley from missouri. caller: i helped barack obama become elected. i notice the nation is not behind him. they are not making the money that people at the top are making. when the people at the top try to negotiate will happen for the people at the bottom, there will be a constant setback of growth. when you have politicians not taking care of business, you have more outgrowth then you
have income. right now our country has more outgrowth then income. if you don't have that overhead, you end up losing what you have. host: george zornick. guest: a lot of people like to talk about world aid. you could look at the defense budget. many liberals have tried to do that. it appears the defense sequester will be avoided. it is kind of tricky. it is an across-the-board cut. you have the same amount coming
out there as you do in these ridiculous weapons systems. there are a lot of liberals that like to keep that number we appropriate or those cuts are going. "let's target the cuts say little bit." host: referring to round two after the senate approved a short-term measure to avoid tax hikes. they decided to delay sequestration for about two months and deal with it once they start negotiating again. that means the new congress will get to vote on this. so these outgoing members will vote today in the house and it will be new members. guest: that is somewhere where the democrats have a bit an advantage. people like tammy baldwin, tim
host: all eyes moved to the house for legislative business. a vote could happen on legislation that was approved early this morning in the senate. coverage on c-span continues throughout the day. jimmy, you are on the air. caller: good morning and happy new year. when i look at the statue at the white house, that is supposed to represent the american people. democrat, republican, we're supposed to do what is right for the country. one thing i have to ask. the people that makes the most money in this country -- why we cannot create jobs to revenue for the country.
it takes individuals to create work for them. guest: this is what a lot of progress are worried about. washington is trying to deal with a long-term debt problem that will be a problem for some time. nobody thinks the country will fall off into financial district. next year. they are doing so in a way that is sitting like it will hurt the average american more than the wealthy. you'll see a lot tax raises on the wealthy. this is much less than they were being asked to pay. you have a minimal kick in from the wealthy. you may see cuts to things like social security, medicare,
medicaid, domestic spending like head start that will be out of whack with what the wealthy will be asked to pay. this is exactly what progress is are worried about. host: no one is sounding happy in washington on this new year's morning. george zornick of "the nation" giving his perspective. we have a tweet from justin amash. george zornick? guest: republicans are in a tough spot. they have spent all the last campaign arguing that raising the rates on top earners would be devastating to the economy.
only about 3% of small businesses would be affected. now republicans will prove these tax increases on top earners they have been rattling against for so long. host: hi, kathy. caller: hello. we are not close to the spending rate for the government as back when clinton was in office. otherwise we're feeding the beasts. when it comes to having the
higher tax rates on the wealthy, that might solve some of the problems but it will not solve all the problems. the economy needs to get going and there needs to be more jobs. i have not seen much in the administration doing anything to help incentivize that in the private sector. part of the problem is the mentality of greed. the government is greedy for more money. it doesn't help when those who have taken advantage of the system, there has been no trials are people going to jail. no investigations. i think you can influence people. it has happened during our recent election. we can change the mentality of pay. if you have what you need, how
about giving? giving to your neighbor. that solves both problems on both sides of the aisle. guest: to get people off welfare, there is the republican approach which would cut their benefits. you have told these people, sorry, you are on your own. another way is to stimulate the economy to the point where they do not need it. it is in the long term a good way to reduce spending on welfare programs. host: heidi fox on twitter has this tweet for us. guest: that seems to be the way that washington works. republicans refused to vote for a bill two weeks ago. today there will likely support a bill that extends them only up to $450,000.
caller: we do not have a tax problem. we have a wage problem. you get people like lindsey graham going around and telling his constituents we have to cut the military. you have the one that voted for the military. it just doesn't make any sense. we have a wage problem. thank you and have a nice day. guest: i think he is right. so many people are doing poorly and qualifying for government benefits.
there are bills to raise the minimum wage. there will be stimulative measures that democrats will ask for. it helps people out and is a good way to reduce government spending by spending it now and stimulating the economy. host: hudson, new hampshire, good morning. caller: i am ashamed to be a republican. i've been a republican since i was young. i was proud to be a republican. now i'm so ashamed. these people are something else. there is a discrimination from the high class and middle class. it's not right. everybody should be paying the
same thing. i thought discrimination should be against the law. the people supposedly working for the people are getting paid so much money for being in the position that they are in and they need to take a deduction. i get a kick out of mitt romney. he was making fun of everybody. this is terrible and i think something should be done about it. guest: i think progressives agree there should be more
equality in with the wealthy pay and what the less wealthy pay. they have raised the rates on the entrances to the estate tax. i think she is looking for a flat tax level where everybody pays the same. the more you earn, more you can to help others. host: somebody happy about the deal on twitter. guest: there's a lot to like. unemployment extension is huge. that is a big boost to the economy. people will be better set up to find a job later. host: we are talking about two million people. guest: the earned income tax credit was extended for five years. no cuts in the deal to medicaid
and social security. you have the top rates at a higher threshold and extended. there's a lot of gloss you can put on this. there is more benefits for our side than the others. host: lynne is next. caller: i wanted to ask the guest about his previous comments that there were higher rates and prosperity under clinton.
bill clinton participated with the legislatures and help balance the budget and he was gung-ho towards small business. i think those are differences from the current administration. guest: the obama administration has passed 17 small business tax cuts at this point. a lot of them are very wealthy companies that are not small businesses. i think the record has shown that he has negotiated with this congress. many think too much. he has cut in the steel and wanted $1.2 trillion and is walking out with $600 billion. host: a democratic caller from florida, pete. caller: i do not know why everybody is so gloom. the owners in this country
should be happy. you still keep your tax cut. you know these people, bain capital, mitt. are loaded with accounts they do not pay taxes on. the country has lost jobs. apple computer does not pay taxes. they are laughing. people that lost their jobs are held hostage. a ceo knows darn well, i'm going to make my profits and so the bottom line to my shareholders is a home run. i stood in line for mr. obama to vote for him.
i'm kind of disappointed. he should show those eight senators that voted against this to ask them why. they bring a bunch of millionaire senators saying why we have to sacrifice and laughter the poor and in comments. they never talk about the cayman islands bank accounts where they are able to laugh like crazy. host: here are the senators that voted no this morning. you have three democratic senators, along with republican
senators -- george zornick. guest: i was surprised more democrats did not vote against it. i think pete raised a couple of good points. this deal will not talked some of the offshore and he spoke of. the next that will be corporate tax reform to close the loopholes and the of shoring. the obama approach is to take to savings and put that into
lowering the tax rates. one way to address this would be to close the loopholes and use some of the savings to invest in the economy can invest in social insurance and help out people that are looking for jobs. host: a lot of focus about speaker boehner's role. this is being called the biden- mcconnell plan. what do you make of mitch mcconnell's role? guest: he is up in 2014. his story about a primary from his right. hard right republicans are not particularly fond of mcconnell. he has to walk a fine line, as does john boehner. he had a few of these guys vote no. that's not the same as john
boehner, who didn't have the votes in his caucus. the tea party republicans refused to back anything that would give an inch to the white house. host: harry reid did not have a role in these negotiations. guest: harry reid could not get his caucus to go along with the threshold. reid was not able to bring along a lot of his members to the deal. so biden stepped in. reid on board now. he refused to put social security on the table.
the left is pretty pleased with how harry reid dealt with this. host: nancy pelosi supposedly signing off on this agreement. joe biden got most of the rank- and-file to approve this. now action moves to the house. this is michael on twitter. guest: all revenue measures have to originate in the house. they put in the new language and sending it to the house ought to be approved. which is legal and is a funny tricks they have to do. i expect it to come up to a vote early this afternoon. host: here is a posting from red state.
problem. host: charles from florida. caller: good morning. i'm becoming more and more concerned about america. i think we have more class warfare and the democrats are doing a super job blaming the rich and saying they should pay more and 50% of the population pay nothing. i am 72 years old. we had a difficult time making ends meet as a youngster. we would pick apples on weekends to find a way to keep ourselves warm and food in the house. but today you don't have to. you can get food stamps. you can live a pretty good life without doing anything. unless something changes, we are in deep trouble.
host: final thoughts. guest: i think it is fair to ask for it deficit reduction deal. you had rates on the very wealthy at an all-time low. 47% of people unable to pay because they don't earn enough to pay. so what you have is a scenario in which the wealthy are doing very well and should kick in a little more. deficit reduction seems like a
fair way to approach that. there are millions more people than available jobs. host: george zornick, thank you. late night for you. guest: i spent more time on new year's eve that i would have cared to. host: thank you for getting up early. >> live coverage continues. happy new year. here is where we stand right now. the house went into recess about an hour-and-a-half ago. we are waiting on the house to come back into session to debate and perhaps vote on the
legislation. we're also waiting for both the house democrats in the house republicans to hold news conferences. we are set up. it was supposed to happen an hour ago. while we were shelleyan that program region while we were showing you that program the cbo -- while we were showing you that program the cbo showed a report showing the legislation added last night at nearly $4 trillion to the deficit over the next nine years. that may be one thing that is being discussed. there are also some tweaked saying that republicans now are thinking about amending the senate bill. there is all sorts of conversation going on about that on twitter and other instant messaging sites. in the meantime, as we wait for the house to come back in
session we want to hear from you. we want to get your views on these negotiations and what is going on on this first day of 2013. we want to run through some tweets that have come in. the hash that we're using is #fiscalcliff. ben says "still hard for me to believe that the house will force the nation ought the fiscal cliff into recession, which is what amending this bill would do." "i just finished reading the senate bill. this is not a bad deal, it is
however only one step, many to go." "the fiscal cliff deal is an increase in taxes to support wasteful government spending. nothing to celebrate over." "we are getting a raw deal. more taxes. no cuts. not the way to balance a budget." >> we're going to take a call from daenny. caller: good afternoon. i want to say that it is a shame washington cannot get its act together and do its job on this fiscal cliff. i seriously believe that if they do not get a dozen in this congress that the 113th congress will get it done. host: the hundred 13 congress comes in on thursday. we will be live from capitol
hill with that. in the meantime we have at least today and tomorrow of the 112th congress. michelle is in palm bay, a republican. caller: i wish responding to the comments earlier when the guest baker was on about well for -- welfare reform. i see way too many people taking advantage of our welfare system. i agree it should be there in emergency situation. there needs to be a cap on it. i have seen multiple people taking advantage of the program, and driving brand new cars, having brand new iphones and crap when they're taking free money from us. host: jeremy, an independent. caller: i feel that we need to
free fall completely over the fiscal cliff. host: why? caller: our conference is broken. our government is fundamentally broken. things do not work. host: what would you like to see happen or change? caller: effective immediately i would like for my fellow citizens to agree to an immediate reduction in the salaries of those who run the government. host: anything else? what about the cuts that would come from government spending? what about the increased taxes? caller: i think that the effects of cuts in regards to how much money the government spends is a good thing. we need to spend less. at the same time we need to have a measured tax system. in the wealthier americans need to pay more. we need to spend less. there is a balance.
our government still cannot come to the simple agreement in ordered to move the country forward. we need a working government. we do not have that. my people agree with me on this. host: james, ga., a democrat. caller: i do not think there's necessarily a problem with government spending as long as it adds value. there are times when my children will ask me to do work to earn extra money. if there is value that can be added through the house i do not mind taking money from within the house. what i will not do is pay for things like painting of the houses that need to be painted. if it is broke and i see no problem with paying them for those type of services. that is how government spending should work.
it reduces traffic congestion which increases in worker productivity. i do not see whether it is a problem with government spending as long as it is been in ways that can add value to our country. host: as we mentioned earlier, we are waiting on three different things. to press conferences, one by the house democrats, one by the house republicans. we're waiting for the house to come back into session to debate the legislation passed by the senate last night. on c-span2 bac you can watch it -- the senate has come back. there's not they can do. they are also there waiting for any potential action by the house of representatives. that is where things stand. in the last hour or so of the congressional budget office has
put out an estimate st. the legislation that hr8, which is what the senate passed early this morning, at nearly $4 trillion to the deficit over the nine years and adds about three under $30 billion to -- $330 billion to spending in general. this is the house republicans. it is where they will be holding their press conference. a lot of people walking around. no conference is yet. we want to show you where the house democrats are set up as well. we will continue to hear your views as the way for all of these things to happen on this new year's day. hello, jeff, a republican line. caller: i am looking for politicians to make the hard
choices. most one not cut anything anymore. it is time for them to stand up and say we need to stop spending. host: what is a hard choice to you? caller: some people in this country are going to get less than they have been getting. it is time we need to get the debt under control. host: thank you. gop to let america down, john boehner during his final shot to delay this. i bet money they send it back to the senate. unless and until the u.s. congress financier's governing again, it they should all stop lecturing other governments of the world. it is another spending bill, political suicide for republicans to vote for it.
what are your thoughts about the fiscal cliff? caller: it is a waste of time. they need to get into session and vote. start getting something done. let's go. they're just piddling around too long. they do not have anything settle debt. i mean, you know. host: how would you like to see the boat go? guest: at this point it does not matter. host: here come the democrats live coverage on c-span. >> are you ready? we just finished a standing room only three-hour long caucus
meeting in which the vice president not only roused the entire membership but also gave us a very thoughtful and detailed explanation of what has gone on and how it was that he and the president, working with democratic and republican leaders were able to come together on this compromise. we first want to say thank you to the vice president for being so gracious and, quite honestly, so frank in explaining the as much as he could about what has transpired over the last several weeks. we are now waiting to hear from our republican colleagues whether or not they want to do what the senate did in a very bipartisan fashion and give the american people the opportunity to have a vote. there are people throughout this
country who may look at this deal and love it, some may hate it, some may not understand it. we firmly believe that every american should have a right to have a vote in the people's house. we're hoping the house will respect the wishes of the american public and let the representatives of those people look up or down on that legislation. with that, i turn it over to our leader, nancy pelosi. >> early this morning, the united states senate voted in a very strong, bipartisan way with 89 votes in favor of a compromise legislation. that was historic. that legislation was then sent over to the house. until now, our speaker has said that when they ask we will have a vote in the house. that is what he said, that is
what we expect. that is what the american people deserve. we go forward now to see what the timing will be for a straight up or down vote in what passed 89-8 last night in the united states senate. today, we have had the privilege of hearing from our vice- president as a talk about what was in the legislation and what lies ahead in the difficult negotiations as we go forward. we had a frank discussion in that regard. after thoughtful deliberation, we are continuing to review the legislation, weighing the pros and cons and the equity of not going over the cliff.
we have made gigantic progress and i hope we can have a bipartisan agreement as we go forward. our members are now making their decision on what the republicans have to say. at some point during the day, as are distinguished -- our distinguished colleague, steny hoyer. >> 46 hours left to go. this congress, unfortunately, has been most known for the unwillingness to compromise. the unwillingness to come together and act on behalf of the american people. today is january 1st. taxes will be going up on everybody in america if we do not act. those who are relying upon
unemployment insurance, millions of americans come to make sure they can support themselves and their families. if we do not act, they will be at risk. vice president biden has worked very hard to come to a compromise. by definition a compromise has elements in it that each party does not like. by definition, it has things in it that each party should like. the speaker says if the senate passed a bill he would put it on the floor or the boat. our leader has pointed out we expect that to happen and he thinks it is in the best interests of the american people. we hope our colleagues on the other side of the aisle can reach a compromise. our members are reviewing the specifics of the compromise that has been reached to determine whether or not they can support the compromise. i am hopeful that this congress,
as one of its last acts come back to not only on this compromise but i am also very open and would expect we would provide the emergency assistance needed for the victims of hurricanes and the. one of the country's worst storms in history to have damaged the northeast so badly. i'm hopeful we will be able to move on both of these issues and we will have members on both sides who will perhaps not agree, but hopefully we will have members on both sides who will agree and we can act as the american people expect us to do so. >> mr. van hollen and the incoming vice chair. >> i will be brief. the difference between a divided government than dysfunctional government is the willingness to compromise. we saw that in the senate as
leader pelosi and whip hoyer have said, it means looking at an agreement and balance, whether it helps move the country forward. we are hopeful that republicans in the house will do what republicans and democrats did in the senate and weigh all of the equity here and decide at the end of the day that not everyone gets 100% of what they want. democracy means a willingness to come together for the good of the country. that is what a compromise is about, especially in the era of divided government. our members are taking a look at the bill. we would just ask our colleagues to bear in mind the good of the country as they also weigh the equity. with that, i will turn it over to the distinguished by chairman
of our caucus. -- vice chairman. >> we appreciate the vice- president coming to the caucus today and explaining the process of the negotiations and why we are where we are today. the time for discussion has come to an end and it will be time to come to a vote soon or this would all have been for naught. happy new year to everyone in this would all have been for naught if we do not have the support of what the american people deserve and expect out of this process. we can either move forward in a bipartisan way hand in hand to avert the fiscal cliff, or our republican colleagues can help lead us off. questions? >> i think you were first.
>> what are your spies on the other side telling you over there? you have to count the numbers with them as well? >> i am not stipulating to any characterization of french wheat -- and permission we have received from our friends in the press. -- on any information. [laughter] i really have no idea. >> because you have to get them to approve this as well. what are you hearing from the other side? >> i think your question is better addressed to the republicans coming in to their conference. we just came out of hours and we know what you tell us as to what is coming out of their caucus. >> you said you would prefer a straight up or down vote? >> absolutely. >> that because of the timing or because this is a deal brokered
by the vice president? >> it was a deal past 89-8 in the senate. normally when you have that on a measure as controversial as this. >> are you having problems with that one? >> i hope we do not have a re- enactment with republicans in the house putting them in the extreme of not wanting to find a compromise and a solution. let's be optimistic. as mr. hoyer and others have said, let's hope they decide to favor the country. the issue of an up or down vote should not even be a question. there should be no question. we were told that we would not have any legislation on the floor until and unless the senate passed it and then when they did we would have a vote. we want to have that vote and we look forward to what the timing will be on that. this is all about time and it's
about time we brought this to the floor. it has only been a matter of a couple of months since the election, eight weeks. in that time, we have been pushed into a new year. it is long overdue to have the solution to go forward as to what comes next for our country. we expect, the american people deserve an up or down vote on what was passed in the senate. >> if there is an up or down vote, how many democratic votes would you have? >> that's not a subject i will be talking about right now. >> considering the legislation we just heard from the vice- president, we will find out which members. >> if you are saying you want bipartisanship from the other side, don't you have to say that you are willing to support this
piece of legislation? >> there is no doubt we will have bipartisanship. i do not have a number. i can tell you we will have a bipartisan vote. >> thank you very much. >> the premise is incorrect. [laughter] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] >> that was the democrats live from the capital holding their press conference waiting for the house to come back into session and potentially waiting for the house republicans to have a press conference. that has not happened yet. in the meantime, we will take your calls and get reactions to a lot of things going on here on the first day of 2013. if you points from reporters. lisa covers the congress for the tribune papers. house gop fired up to change the
senate fiscal cliff bill? they will meet again in one hour. that is about 10 minutes old. this is from eric what some of the hill. house majority leader harry kantor is against the senate fiscal cliff deal, multiple members say. one reason he may be against it is because the new cbo report came out where it says this bill adds about $4 trillion over the next nine years to the deficit. there's about $330 billion in new spending as well, so that may be playing into what is going on the hill right now. we will be live all afternoon and evening until and if and and of something happens. fred in missouri, democratic line. you have been holding.
thank you for your patience. guest: first and foremost, happy new year. the time for cutting social security and medicare entitlements, let's cut attached -- tax deductions on people making $200,000 and up to we can have a jobs for this country like we need them, in infrastructure, education, aerospace, alternative energy, research, development. the list goes on. host: that was bred in misery. next up is still, republican line, minnesota. -- phil. guest: as a republican i believe
we need to pass the obama tax bill and then once we get to the ceiling of the debt we would then forced the congress to go forward with a $1 trillion debt reduction on an annual basis until it is paid off. basically, we are overspending. we have to get our debt under control. host: dan the covers it for cnn has this tweet. that is brand new from dana bash. here are some tweets from viewers using #fiscalcliff.
because they could not come up with anything and now they're going to take that down the road again and then we are coming up to another ceiling height in a few months were the debt ceiling is going to get raised again? $6 trillion in four years that we do not have any asking us to do it again and wants us to raise taxes on the rich? what? going to amount to six weeks of the budget for the government? it's not going to do a damn thing. this president has opportunity when he was first elected to put people to work. instead of putting people to work, he turned around and he came to the rich. he gave it to the bankers, the unions, general motors. general motors. they were not supposed to go bankrupt with the money they got from obama but they did.
that is what romney wound up during the first place. host: we will leave your comments there, frank. pamela in fontana, calif. good afternoon. caller: and does not matter if they pass this or not. the spending has to quit. you are a democrat or republican, what is the difference? you work for the american people. treat them like people, not what political party they are. the president will not talk to republicans. joe biden, i'm proud of him. he worked with them. the talk to the republican house representatives? i don't think so. daniel host: come independent line from four and up. we're talking about congress and the fiscal cliff negotiations.
caller: i am a retired police officer. i'm disabled. i cannot work. i have had my pension frozen since -- my cola frozen. i'm just asking my fellow citizens to step up and share the wealth with me. that's all. host: how would you like to see that happen? caller: there is going back to be some taxes on the people who have more money. the cola that is frozen for me every year is costing me money. it's not a tax, but i am saving taxpayer's mind that way. my health insurance goes up and every year i get less and less money. host: at noon when the house came into session, a lot of the members of congress made what they call 1-minute speeches were you can talk for whatever topic you want for up to 60 seconds
and obviously the fiscal cliff with the main topic of the one- minute speeches today. retiring members dennis kucinich and rep ted poe from texas. [video clip] this confines us to a maximum unemployment, threats to the social safety net, a deteriorated structure, a psychology of poverty amidst austerity. congress must regain their first power of court under the constitution to create money, invest in our nation interest- free to put america back to work. why go into debt borrowing money from china, japan, south korea
when we have the constitutional authority to protect our economic sovereignty and ensure long-term nabisco health? the endless cycle will not work because the debt keeps ballooning with compounded interest. it is time for new american monetary policy. the reforms are outlined in the national mood. let's we gain control of america's destiny. > of > isdn is consent to address the house for one minute. >> without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one day. >> new year's day, 2013. what an excellent time to make one resolution. maybe congress should joint spending anonymous. years the 12-step plan. one -- the new york spending
someone else's money. two -- make a list. greek -- three, pass a balanced budget amendment. four, stop giving money to countries that hate us. 5, result spend money we do not have. do not borrow any more money from china. do not make excuses for our addiction. do not blame others for the addiction. run congress like most people run their family budgets. remember we are to do the will of the people. have a support group and meet regularly to confess our addiction. mr. speaker, congress should join spending anonymous. that's just the way it is. host: that was about three hours ago that the members of the 112th congress spoke.
they have gone into recess subject to the call of the chair. they have not debated the fiscal cliff. we're waiting for the house to come into session potentially to look at this legislation, debate, vote, do something. that is the first thing. two, we're waiting on the house republicans to potentially hold a press conference. we are having our camera setup. the senate is live on c-span2. they are done. they have voted and they're waiting for the house potentially to do something, live coverage of the u.s.
senate. you can switch over to watch them, or you can stay with us and we will try to keep you updated on what is going on, listen to what you have to say, read your tweets. in vermont, a democrat. hello. caller: i'm calling because i am a democrat. we have always had a pretty good leadership with a democratic government. for eight years, as soon as it started, president bush got us into the war's end he does the deficit snowballing. clinton got us out. what i would like to suggest is that the republicans first reduce their salaries by half. then they pay for their own transportation to and from the sea instead of the taxpayers. -- to and from d.c.
they should pay for their own housing. i would also think republicans should reduce their paid vacation time to maximum 10 weeks per year like all the other government employees. they are ripping us off by being out playing instead of doing their jobs. host: press secretary to speaker john boehner just sent an e- mail to reporters. this is what he has to say. >> on the record, the speaker and minority leader made up the options and listen to be back. the lack of cuts was a universal concern among members in today's meeting. this will continue throughout the afternoon to move forward. that is an official statement
from speaker boehner's office. just as the reminder what the senate passed last night and some of the provisions in the senate bill, quickly, tax rates go up for those with an income over 400 of them dollars. above that amount, the tax rate is 39.6%. estate taxes hit a top rate of 40%. capital gains taxes go back to 20% and have delayed across-the- board spending cuts for two months. it extends the long term unemployment benefits for one year, allows 2% payroll tax cuts to last, restores the 6.2% and the alternative minimum tax is permanently adjusted. gordon in maine, independent line. happy new year. caller: happy new year to you,
also. one question. why is congress allowed to spend indiscriminately when we, as taxpayers, have to spend within narrow limits? they're spending outside of their limits year after year after year. and now we're in this financial crisis because of them. should they be held responsible? host: thank you, gordon. from abc, this tweet. south yarmuth, dennis. caller: happy new year. i think it is time we take a
look at our expectations of these people in congress. we have to take control of the government. they're going to cut my social security and medicare and these people get guaranteed insurance, hospitalization, dental, so on. it's time to take a good look at term limits and get rid of some of the dead weight. host: in tennessee on our one for republicans. hello. caller: happy new year. i would just like to say that by hope republicans do not vote for the senate bill. i would like to see them cut all possible spending before they even think about raising any taxes. there are plenty of places to cut. if they vote for it, they fall in the same trap they have in
the past. the democrats have told republicans, don't worry about it. we will negotiate down the line. is the best these tax rates now and then we will talk about spending. trust us. i do not trust them. they should go for spending cuts before they go into any kind of tax increases. thank you for your time. host: on twitter, using the #fiscalcliff, thousands are coming in.
greenwood delaware, you are on c-span. caller: earlier you had someone saying something about having his account cut. if your check is cut, i will tell you what i will do. i will pay the difference. this has been going on for more than 30 years. everytime you turn around, they say you're going to cut social security. it has never happened and it will not happen to anyone u.s. social security today. they are not going to cut your social security. their talk. -- they are talking about maybe someone in the future but not today.
why are they saying they're going to cut social security? it's not going to happen. host: robert, independent, detroit. caller: happy new year. the policy the obama administration is pursuing a similar to that of bill clinton. a few years ago, forbes magazine, not a liberal magazine, had a polling about the fiscal health of the country and clinton was that number one. if people really cared about the direction of the country, we do have a source that is ranked with the democratic approach as the most sound of any president. i think people just need to think about that. that's all i have to say. host: we have live coverage on
c-span of both the house and senate of the fiscal cliff negotiations. the senate is on session on c- span2. they're not doing anything right now waiting for the house to take action, but they are in session just in case there are amendments to the bill that passed last night. they have done their portion to start this off. the house is in recess subject to the call of the chair, so we do not know the status if and when they could call back, but right now does not look like it will happen right away. house republicans have met in conference. house democrats met in conference. house democrats just tell their conference and we're waiting on the republicans potentially to come out and hold one as well. the cameras are set up but no one has come out as of yet.
the cbo released their report on the cost of the bill passed by the senate last night saying that nearly $4 trillion in added deficits in the next nine years, $330 billion in new spending over the next nine years as well. from new jersey, a democrat, hello. caller: hello. thank you for taking my call. i think they should just increase the revenue and take their time the next few months to go over these spending cuts. it would take a lot longer. the other thing i would suggest is the senate was easier to work with because they are not subject to gerrymandering.
one last prank, but when i went to college 40 or 50 years ago when we studied economics, we talked about a regressive tax system and now, somewhere, they are just talking about that in the speech. they're fighting against the tax increase for the wealthiest 2%. if we do come to some compromise, the 2% pay an increase in taxes, of their habits will not go up. host: we will leave it there. too bad converge on our
independent line. -- to baton rouge. caller: talking about the fact want to go to the dedicated funds. there are now dedicated funds in social security. what dedicated funds are they talking about? host: reminder to turn down the volume on your television if you get on there. more tweets coming in with #fiscalcliff.
next call from vegas, a democrat. hello. caller: happy new year to you. every time we talk about cuts, they tried to attack a big block of money like social security and medicare. it would be really interesting and everyone got on the internet and googled appropriations, discretionary spending, and look at the ridiculous things that could be logged off their such as $1 million for studying the mating habits of african elephants. there is abstinence training. there are all these things that people do not know about that we are paying for out of our tax dollars and i think people need to do that. these guys need to get off their butts and vote yes or no. and we can go from there instead of keeping us here in suspense as to what our future holds.
host:. recalling in this afternoon. when the house came into session at noon, several members went to the floor to speak about the fiscal cliff. here are a few more members of congress from earlier today. [video clip] >> they passed a fiscal cliff bill without senators to consider it. and more importantly, without giving the american people time to understand and share their insights. senator mitch mcconnell observant "this should not be the model for how we do things around here." and then they proceeded likable in a china closet anyway. they boasted they are the deliberative body. today that rings hollow. mr. speaker, the house must postpone the vote until congress and the american people have time to study and evaluate this extraordinarily complex legislation and its impact on
taxes, revenue, the economy, and a myriad of other issues. it's better to get it right than to act in haste. if we vote on the fiscal cliff bill today, i will vote against it because this is not the way to do the people's business. i will not condone a process that denies the american people on opportunity to participate in their republic on issues of this magnitude. i yield back. >> to what purpose does the gentleman from morgan seek recognition. without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> the agreement we are expected to vote on has many commendable and important items. unfortunately too many are short term, much is left out, and we are losing an opportunity for reform. we cannot continue to have, by far, the world's most largest and expensive military, the
lowest taxes, the most expensive and inefficient health-care system, and continue to allow infrastructure to fall apart all while america out grows and ages. this agreement represents the least we could have done under these circumstances and tragically, it institutionalizes for the next congress the madness of the short-term frenzy around artificial deadlines to drive the american public crazy. not only can we do better but we must do better. this flawed, partial plan is not just a lost opportunity but represents a real setback. host: back to your phone calls on what is going on in congress. republican line from arkansas. caller: i pay health insurance every month. every year i end up paying $600
and it just goes up. on the issue of medicare in the fiscal cliff, you get 1.5% taken out of your paycheck or the past 20 years. why can we not raise that to the amount people pay for future health care? that would not bother me one bit. that is not a tax increase. it's an economic issue that health insurance costs have gone up but they have never raise the amount of money we pay for our future health care which is 1.5%. raise it to 2% or whatever it needs. it does no good unless they lock that money in a box. they take that money and spend it every year and they try to find money to pay out benefits. i am not for tax increases, but
it does not bother me that i pay a little bit more for my future healthcare because my health insurance goes up every year. why can medicare not go up? host: next is francis in redding, pa., on the republican line. caller: hello. good afternoon. if i go back a little bit, all democracies are small but loyal. what you're seeing today is a mob rule in -- are mob rule. people keep saying democrat, republican, all of that. you do not have an individual particular point of view. it always has to be a party ideology. most people do not have the
light of truth should upon them. the majority of a democracy in mob rule, you'll see them all with doing the wrong thing and never the right thing so that the people themselves have become corrupted, the american people, while the government has also become corrupted because the issue is not about inflation. it is not about a recession. it is about good versus evil. one of your earlier callers said that there was a moral issue about all of this. that is what they are referring to, the morality, the character not only of the president of the government and of the people. right now, all they are addressing is a financial issue. if you do not address the moral issue, we are living currently
line, good afternoon. caller: good afternoon. this problem is what i would call a national problem and maybe we need a 12-day program to curtail addictive spending. the second major problem we have is waste in government. i served my country for 45 years. i served in the military for 24 years and after that i served the u.s. government to bring that to a total of 45 years. what i observed is the waste in the government is greater than on 30% and in some agencies it is as high as 50%. we need more government managers spending all they cannot otherwise they will not get as much money next year. we never reward those managers to save money.
the huge problem is creating growth for the country and creating jobs. we pay people to not work. we need to train people to work for the jobs of the future. we need a budget to base line all government agencies. host: thank you for that call from annapolis. next up is michael in new york, democratic line. caller: happy new year. i would like to make a little statement about the gop's selective amnesia. they have been in control of both houses, the presidency for eight years. capitalism has failed twice in 100 years. both times it was caused by unfettered greed. that is what we are faced with now. we fought a war in iraq that we
should have never, ever been in. the one in afghanistan should have ended way, way before this. the fact of the matter is you get down to the bottom and that is where they want to take it. they always, always go for the bottom. the top has not paid their fair share. rarely do they serve. it is always the middle class and the poor kids that go and spill their blood. normally we have taxes to cover the bad side of these wars and any kind of disaster that happens. i find this laughable at times. it was not so serious because i have four children and seven grandchildren who have to carry this on their shoulders. i am really, really downtrodden
glenn, thank you for holding. please go ahead with your comments. caller: happy new year. i am a democrat. i stayed at home the last election. i did not like to was running, what they were running for, but first of all, i feel that obama tried to placate the house of the senate by giving them a raise just a few years ago -- a few weeks ago but it did not work. it's the democrats, which i am one, claimed bill clinton's days
were so good, and they were not that bad, if they were so good, what is wrong with going over the fiscal cliff? what's wrong with it? it would go back to his days. if he was so good and such an just get it, let's over with. host: think of calling in to c- span. the house is in recess subject to the call of the chair. they could come back at any moment. they could or could not debate the senate desk--- senate-passed a legislation. as soon as they come back, we will bring that to your live on c-span. the senate is in session and you can watch that on c-span2. they're waiting for the house to take action. the house republicans are potentially scheduled for press
availability. they have been meeting in conference behind closed doors to us that the democrats did earlier period, the democratic conference broke up antidemocratic house leaders held a press conference. that happened maybe a half hour ago. we will show that to you again now. anything else happens, we will break out of that to go live to the house or republican conference, whatever. here are the house democrats from 20-25 minutes ago. "we just finished a standing- room only three-hour long caucus meeting in which the vice president's not only rouse the entire membership but also give us a very thoughtful and
detailed explanation of what has gone on and how was that he and president working with the democrats and republican leaders were able to come together on this compromise. we first want to say thank you to the vice president for being so gracious and, quite honestly, so frank in explaining the as much as he could about what has transpired over the last several weeks. we are now waiting to hear from our republican colleagues whether or not they want to do what the senate did in a very bipartisan fashion and give the american people the opportunity to have a vote. there are people throughout this country who may look at this deal and love it, some may hate it, some may not understand it. we firmly believe that every american should have a right to have a vote in the people's house.
we're hoping the house will respect the wishes of the american public and let the representatives of those people look up or down on that legislation. with that, i turn it over to our leader, nancy pelosi. >> early this morning, the united states senate voted in a very strong, bipartisan way with 89 votes in favor of a compromise legislation. that was historic. that legislation was then sent over to the house. until now, our speaker has said that when they ask we will have a vote in the house. that is what he said, that is what we expect. that is what the american people deserve. we go forward now to see what the timing will be for a straight up or down vote in what passed 89-8 last night in the united states senate.
today, we have had the privilege of hearing from our vice-president as a talk about what was in the legislation and what lies ahead in the difficult negotiations as we go forward. we had a frank discussion in that regard. after thoughtful deliberation, we are continuing to review the legislation, weighing the pros and cons and the equity of not going over the cliff. we have made gigantic progress and i hope we can have a bipartisan agreement as we go forward. our members are now making their decision on what the republicans have to say. at some point during the day, ais our distinguised whip, steny
hoyer. >> 46 hours left to go. this congress, unfortunately, has been most known for the unwillingness to compromise. the unwillingness to come together and act on behalf of the american people. today is january 1st. taxes will be going up on everybody in america if we do not act. those who are relying upon unemployment insurance, millions of americans come to make sure they can support themselves and their families. if we do not act, they will be at risk. vice president biden has worked
very hard to come to a compromise. by definition a compromise has elements in it that each party does not like. by definition, it has things in it that each party should like. the speaker says if the senate passed a bill he would put it on the floor or the boat. -- for a vote our leader has pointed out we expect that to happen and he thinks it is in the best interests of the american people. we hope our colleagues on the other side of the aisle can reach a compromise. our members are reviewing the specifics of the compromise that has been reached to determine whether or not they can support the compromise. i am hopeful that this congress, as one of its last acts come back to not only on this compromise but i am also very open and would expect we would provide the emergency
assistance needed for the victims of hurricanes and the. -- sandy. one of the country's worst storms in history to have damaged the northeast so badly. i'm hopeful we will be able to move on both of these issues and we will have members on both sides who will perhaps not agree, but hopefully we will have members on both sides who will agree and we can act as the american people expect us to do so. >> mr. van hollen and the incoming vice chair. >> i will be brief. the difference between a divided government than dysfunctional government is the willingness to compromise. we saw that in the senate as leader pelosi and whip hoyer have said, it means looking at an agreement and balance, whether it helps move the country forward.
we are hopeful that republicans in the house will do what republicans and democrats did in the senate and weigh all of the equity here and decide at the end of the day that not everyone gets 100% of what they want. democracy means a willingness to come together for the good of the country. that is what a compromise is about, especially in the era of divided government. our members are taking a look at the bill. we would just ask our colleagues to bear in mind the good of the country as they also weigh the equity. with that, i will turn it over to the distinguished by chairman of our caucus. -- vice chairman. >> we appreciate the vice- president coming to the caucus today and explaining the process of the negotiations and
why we are where we are today. the time for discussion has come to an end and it will be time to come to a vote soon or this would all have been for naught. happy new year to everyone in this would all have been for naught if we do not have the support of what the american people deserve and expect out of this process. we can either move forward in a bipartisan way hand in hand to avert the fiscal cliff, or our republican colleagues can help lead us off. case. that's not the >> questions? >> i think you were first. >> what are your spies on the other side telling you over there? you have to count the numbers with them as well? >> i am not stipulating to any
characterization of any information we receive from our friends in the press. [laughter] i really have no idea. >> because you have to get them to approve this as well. what are you hearing from the other side? >> i think your question is better addressed to the republicans coming in to their conference. we just came out of hours and we know what you tell us as to what is coming out of their caucus. >> you said you would prefer a straight up or down vote? >> absolutely. >> that because of the timing or because this is a deal brokered by the vice president? >> it was a deal past 89-8 in the senate. normally when you have that on a measure as controversial as this. -- tell me when you've had that. >> are you having problems with
that one? >> i hope we do not have a re- enactment with republicans in the house putting them in the extreme of not wanting to find a compromise and a solution. let's be optimistic. as mr. hoyer and others have said, let's hope they decide to favor the country. the issue of an up or down vote should not even be a question. there should be no question. >> it should not be a question. we were told that we would not have any legislation on the floor until or unless the senate acted. when they did, we would have a vote. we want to have that vote and we look forward to what that timing is on that. this is all about time. it is about time we brought this to the floor. it has only be a matter of a couple of months, since the election, eight weeks. during that period of time we've been pushed into a new year.
it is long overdue for us to have a solution and go forward and remove all doubt as to what comes next for our country. so we expect the american people, deserve an up or down vote in the senate. >> if there is an up or down vote how many democratic votes will you have, will be able to deliver? >> that is not a subject we will talk about right now. >> considering all of the legislation that we just heard from the vice president and we will find out which members -- >> you are saying you want bipartisan from the other side, don't you have to say you are willing to support this piece of legislation? >> i don't think there is any doubt we will have bipartisan, she asked for the number. i don't have a number but i will tell you we will have a bipartisan vote. >> thank you very much.
>> when will you start? >> that was the house democrats from about a half an hour ago. we are live, live coverage of the fiscal cliff negotiations and a potential vote in the house, a revote in the senate. right now, only the senate is meeting but the senate has already done something, they did it earlier this morning 89-9 was the final passage oven their so-called fiscal cliff legislation.
the house is in recess subject to the call of the charpe. the democrats held a press conference, the republicans are still meeting. we're getting tweets and reporter information that majority leader eric cantor is against the senate-passed bill. phone numbers reason the screen if you would like to dial in and make a comment about what is going on right now in washington on this first day of 2013. while we get those calls up i want to read some of these tweets that have been coming in and literally, thousands of them at the #fiscal cliff. this is from samuel, how can the senate pass a bill 89-8 and the out can't? this is jordan, is house g.o.p. rejection of the fiscal cliff deal sign that the they that obama won't be negligenting on the debt ceiling?
>> this is art. where does this leave us at this point? amendments, no time for that, pass it. nothing like bringing in the new year with a good old fiscal cliff get it together congress. henry is on our independent line, henry, good afternoon, this is c-span and you're on. caller: good afternoon. i'm an independent and i wanted to comment that i guess the democrats have to be cause shouse that the republicans don't wake up and take the position they have in a catch 22 position. they can give him everything he asked for and if he's successful in his programs and his plans, we are the republican party and the house gave you ever dollar you asked for, everything worked out fine and turn around to the american public and say it was us, the republicans that did
this. if it doesn't work out they can turn around and say, well, we gave you everything you asked for and it didn't work. it time for us to take over. just a word of caution to the democrats. >> connie in south carolina. good afternoon. caller: happy new year. i was calling about that speech actually. the house did pass a bill in august and it seems like the house democrats are talking like, you know, no bill was passed. it is kind of confusing because they are not taking any -- i don't know they are acting like the senate is doing all the work and the house already did the work. host: that was connie and this
is dale on the republican line. caller: actually the lady that was just on the lined that same point i was going to make that the house had already passed the bill and what did the bill look like when it got to the senate and how much did the senate change it and send it back for revote? host: that's it? caller: yeah, that's it she had the same point i did. what did the bill look leek when bill was passed back to the house. host: a lot of the members went to the floor to do what is called one-minute speeches on the fiscal cliff. here is the republican from california.
>> we are kicking the can down the road. like an airplane, did we climb over it? no, what we're going to do in the present plan is put another $1 trillion of debt on the american people. time is running out to change the direction. that $1 trillion is not just a problem for the next generation it is a problem for corporate america, it is a problem for every american. the $1 trillion we spend and waste this year is $1 trillion we will have too bear for the rest of the our lives. i will vote for a bill that will hold down the growth of spending in the government but i will tell you, i won't do it thinking
we have accomplished anything today, it has hundreds of holes in it. i yield back to the speaker. host: back to live coveage. this call is from sharon in detroit, michigan. how are you you doing, sharon? guest: i have a question to the republican voters, these cuts that the republicans want to make to the entitlement programs don't you think they will affect your? they will. they will affect everyone who is a struggling hard-working american. the republicans do not care about ordinary citizens. their goal is for the rich. thank you. host: all right, sharon. ken is on the democrat line from
pennsylvania. caller: i'm trying to be more philosophical than person opinion. the problem has manifested for 50 years. you can get into discussions about the gold standard or whatever. we're trying to solve it on a holiday. i don't believe this is how government was supposed to work, i don't believe this is what we vote for. in 2008, i remember the vice president saying deficits do not matter. ok, when did the change happen? that is the question we should be asking. when the treasury comes to the president and says we have no money, the country is going to shut down. these are things that confuse me as to how we got here and how we're going to get out of it?
host: ok, let's leave it there. joining us from capitol hill is the editor from ""washington journal"." what did you hear from members, bring us up-to-date. guest: they are in a break right now. the message i heard from the republican leaders, john boehner and the house speaker is that they don't like the bill, the republicans did not like the bill and the leaders don't like the billet. john boehner is inclined to let his members -- any that can getting together on an amendment he is inclined to let them put the bill on the floor and try to pass it through. if they can't get that number, if they can't get 217 he's inclined to put the senate bill
on the floor and let the house work its will. those are the two options right now. what happened earlier today was the republicans taking temperature where everybody was. they did that. now they are trying to figure out those 218 for the alternative and go from there. >> when you talk to individual members as they were coming out, what did you hear from them? are there a majority of republicans in favor of the senate bill right now? guest: no, i did not talk to enough to say for certain but i am shocked -- just about everybody i talked with i talked with only one that was in favor of it. most of those who that came out were in favor of trying to amend it or reject it. a couple of things about it that an jered the republicans was the
sequester, the automatic spending cuts get postponed for two months. most republicans were sort of excited to get real spending cut for the first time in a generation up here. the senate deal canceled those with a first two months with a promise of future spending cuts and replaces some of the cuts with new tax increases. that hit a lot of the republicans in the wrong way in addition to the tax deal. a lot of specifics in here. the other thing that happened the congressional budget office the senate met last night and they came in as house republicans were going into the meeting today. that shows a net increase in spending. if you take the new spend and show the net increase in the spending about $330 billion.
before they wet into the meeting a number of republicans told me they are waiting to see what they think of this. walking out was a big issue. it spends more -- it deepens the deficit because of the amount of spending. host: they are estimating $4 trillion in added deficit spending in the next nine years. are there enough republicans who would support the current senate bill along with enough democrats to reach 218 from what you're seeing? guest: that's the question. i don't know an answer to that. i would say it would be close. last night's senate vote was such a big margin it gave this bill some momentum but at the same time the amount of time it spent out there, the 12 hours the things that have come out have pushed some of those republicans that would probably
be on the fence pushed them in the other direction. there is probably no answer to that. we probably won't know until that is the choice facing republicans. as of right now, if i'm betting i would say it is likely that they would try to amend it so there would not be a up and down vote that nancy pelosi is asking for the up and down vote. if i was betting right now, i would doubt that up and down vote passes. it is likely to be on the republican amendment and they would have to reject that. that the point, we'll see where things go. host: if that becomes the case, what is the senate's role? guest: when harry reid closed the senate at 2:00 a.m. this morning he sent them home. he said -- when i came over here the senate was in session, meeting but they are few
senators around and in town and harry reid when he closed down the senate early this morning he expected the next role call vote was to be when the senate comes back on noon on thursday. he did not expect any roll cal votes before that. if the hurricane sandy ban comes they would have to pass that. that is the signal they don't think they can bring their members back to town. if the house does amend it there is going to be a lot of pressure on the senate that throws the hot potato back into their laps. they might scramble to see if they can get folks back or they will have to reject that and we're less than 48 hours away from the end of this congress, not to mention we're over the edge of the cliff. host: when do you expect the house to come back into session? guest: they did not give a
specific time. they just said they will do more conversations throughout the afternoon. they are going to go back into -- the house republican are going to go back into a conference first then we'll so floor action. before we see a bill on the floor we're going to go through the rules committee they will have to report a rule out on the sandy spending bill and on the fiscal cliff deal. so there is a lot of stuff that has to happen before we get these billses of the floor should the republicans decide to move forward. host: when did you come into work? were you there all night? guest: i went home about six hours overnight but it has been a lot of long days. last year aspend new years in a hotel watching a presidential campaign and now i spent it in
the press gallery with my closest reporter friends, not where i anticipated being. host: we appreciate your time. i hope we can check in with you later this evening. guest: any time. host: back to your phone calls as we got the update on the fiscal cliff negotiations. this is jerry in longview, texas. caller: hi, thanks for taking my call. it is disheartening to hear the republicans demonized. i'm 65 and i had my son and my grandson living with me and i'm on disability and every month have a budget to live by. we don't believe in debt. the main thing, my statement is, or what i'm concerned about, why can't our country and our
lawmakers see that they should have to set a budget and live responsiblely and handle our economy responsiblely just like people out here in the real world have to do every day without going into debt. can i get an opinion on that please? host: not from me but make some other callers would like to share their thoughts. this is todd. caller: i don't know if the viewers know this but at 2:20 this morning the president signed an executive order giving all members of congress a pay increase. now we're talking about the fiscal cliff and they are giving themselves a raise. this is what i propose, this congress does nothing anyway, they are do a do-nothing
congress. why can't we get rid of them by force and start all over again? host: clarence is in michigan and this is a democrat. caller: from the president down to the congress, they have been acting like babies. they should go home and patch this up and quit acting like 2 -year-olds. host: here are more tweets coming into the #fiscal cliff. i can't believe the g.o.p. would be stupid enough to sink this. fiscal cliff is the reason i hate my a.p. government class
and government and lack of intelligence in americans and people in general. this is kimberly, we have to repay the $16-plus trillion in debt just to get back to being broke and pat says, this is about making obama look bad. the republican house members don't care about anything else. you know who else thought this thought it was a great idea to increase taxes without decreasing spend something greece. failing to see how raising taxes and putting off spending cuts is a compromise. not including debt celling in the fiscal cliff deal means the battle will continue. action on immigration reform likely gets pushed off. robert in north carolina, republican line. caller: hi, happy new year.
i firmly believe they have to pass this. i think we're between a rock and a hard place especially with the congress. i'm hoping and praying they will. i don't see we have a choice. maybe we can get back to some good legislation and not wait to the last minute and it will cost the republican votes when the house comes up to vote. i'm sure it will by next election. i'm hoping they will do the right thing and get this passed. host: joann on the democrat line. caller: happy new year. the republicans are always talking about cutting the deficit and i'm a democrat and i believe we should cut the deficit. however, we can cut the deficit by taxing the wealthy more and $250,000 is wealthy. they also will not consider cutting corporations loopholes or raising taxes on
corporations. they will not consider cutting military even though we have gotten out of one war. if we cut poor people top fund military corporations and the wealthy we're going to hurt our economy. it's going to -- our economy is going to tank. host: that is joeian. once again, waiting for house to come back -- they are in recess subject to the call of the chair. as our guests of the "washington times" told us when they come back into the session, the rules committee has to come back first to create the rules for the current senate bill or amend the bill. we have a lot going on today on this first year of 2013. this is the current 112th
congress. the new congress gets seated, 113th congress gets seated on thursday. a lot of these members that are taking part in the discussion will not be in the next congress. so that new congress takes over on thursday. "the "washington journal" that morning will be live from capitol hill to introduce the 113th congress. but right now we're dealing with the 112th and maybe 45 hours left in that time frame to do anything they are going to do. well, this morning on the "washington journal" -- earlier as we were waiting for the house to act we showed you the segment with the nation columnist and now we're going to show you the
segment from this morning's "washington journal." if anything happens if any breaking news happens that we need to cut out of this, we will cut out and we'll be back here live all afternoon and all evening. >> happy new year. so what is your take on this deal that was reached in the senate? guest: i think it is a mess in a lot of ways. the notion that you're going to sort of take this entire, huge debt problem and put it on whatever it is, 2% taxpayers and small businesses, not only doll i find that fundamental unfair but it is also -- i think it will not work. we saw that yesterday with president obama's speech he said, look, this is the beginning of tax hikes.
we're going to have more next year. i don't know if he is going to keep going back to that 2%, i don't think that is what he means by that. i think he's going to go back to more and more people until they get it down to $250,000 and above. as we were just talking about it is a tough sell for republicans in the house. i don't think this will garner any support in the house that we saw in the senate last night. i'm blown away to look at the people that voted on this morning. i think what happened was speaker john boehner, say whatever you want to about the guy he has run a very open shop compared to previous speakers. he has let a lot of things go on the floor and say vote for it if
you want or don't vote for it. he is far less of the hammer that is his pred saysers have been that you and i have have covered. i think that's what he is going to do. i don't think cyst going to whip it, i think he will put tonight floor and say vote however you want. if democrats get on board i'm sure -- joe biden and president obama are going to work that very hard and i gather democratic leaders will too. they will wind up getting a lot of democratic support far less republican support. not only does this bill not include spending cuts but it actually postpones the cuts that everyone agreed to for two months. by my reed reading of it this dale of raising more money there are no cuts to be found in it.
it is that typicals pain free deal that we tend to see out of folks here in washington. >> we'll talk about what is being called round two but let's start with the vote in the house. senators approved it in an unusual vote for the senate. it could be taken up as early as this afternoon in the house. you think it does not get as much support. what does that mean for the speaker and the speaker's shift heading into the 113th congress? >> i think it is a double-edged sword for him. i think he is trying to get it done as quickly as possible because it is a terrible situation for him. he doesn't like it, he doesn't like the bill. he may end up voting for it because they need to keep things moving along and that is kind of the way this town works.
but he does not like it. it is far worse atlanta the bill that he tried to, sort of, tried to pass a week or so ago. it is far worse for republicans but i think it is interesting in one respect it is an element of leadership. he is saying you guys vote for this or whatever, he could say hold the bill up and -- he could stop it. i don't think he is going to do that. part of the reason i don't think he's going to do it because 90% or 89 votes in support of it. that would suggest this way this town is constructed right now that is overwhelming support. he would not look that good if he would single-handedly stop something like that.
in that respect i do think conservatives can shea this is leadership on his part. he will get some kind of speakership re-election with the caucus. on the other hand, he has been even handed about this stuff and i don't think -- there are a lot of complaints among the conservative members of the house, you can't say he's been -- he really hasn't been -- he has not given them a lot of trouble. he tries to give them what they want. i think a lot of conservatives may view him as the best possible deal they can sort of hope for in house leadership right now. host: how is mitch mcconnell looking to the right? guest: this deal is a bad deal for conservatives. i don't know how he can, he's
very smart and he's very -- you know, he's willing to make-up popular stands in order to get what republicans want. but this deal is a terrible deal. i think a lot of conservatives will say if nothing happens we'll be in a better position. he he made a number of fumbles along the way that got us to this place. i think at the moment he is getting a little bit more ire from conservatives. host: what did you make of the president's news conference? guest: he comes out and says we need to work together and stop trying to score political points.
then he goes on to trash the motives of republicans. "we believe in something. you have your mandate. we have our mandate." i find that to be small and petty. this is it high point for him. this deal he got is a fantastic deal. he is going to have to go back to people and raise more taxes. he said this is not going to work. i think he was lying down the marker. this may not cause a general
outcry from people across the political spectrum. when he goes after these other people that will be outraged by this will wake up. host: let's listen to what he had to say. [video clip] >> if republicans think i will finish the job of deficit reduction through spending cuts alone, we're just going to try to shove only spending cuts down -- well -- [laughter] shove spending cuts at us that will hurt seniors or hurt students or hurt middle class families without asking equivalent sacrifice from
millionaires or companies with a lot of lobbyists. if they think that will be the formula, they have another thing coming. that's not how it is going to work. it will have to be a matter of shared sacrifice. host: charles hurt? guest: the degree of disingenuous there. spending cuts alone -- where are the spending cuts? host: he is talking about round two. guest: i get that. this was a speaking technique where he talked about all these spending cuts and suggests we
have been awash in spending cuts. it is a bill clinton technique and he did a good job of it. it makes everybody forget that we do not have any spending cuts. that is one thing we are not addressing. host: liberals are not happy either. "this is a bad deal for us. what is left on the revenue side?" guest: i do agree on that. this is the high water mark for president obama and four liberals and it will get worse for them here on out. say it will be better going forward is different than saying it is already bad.
i don't think anybody could look at the present situation except for conservatives in the senate that see this as a deal worth voting for and that blows my mind. maybe they see something differently than most conservatives do, but the current situation is far worse for conservatives than liberals. though, it is a good point that it will get worse for them going forward, i think. host: "the new york times" reports -- guest: they are weary.
they have been working so hard for us. i wonder if some conservatives, tom coburn, who is a very principled conservative in the senate from oklahoma, i guess what a lot of them thought was at least this is in the direction of a balanced budget, which is far better than 90% of the stuff that goes on around you, and that allowed them to vote for it. it does not progress the bigger issues, and it will not come as president obama told us, solve the problems. they will have to go back to the well and after more people. host: let's give viewers involved. from twitter -- what else was inside the bill the side the tax bill? what other bad laws are in this?
guest: i do not know the particulars. final the boehner -- i know the boehner attempt that tried to make permanent for $1 million and below, that included some smart tech -- tax issues that would have closed loopholes and made part of the tax code more fair. i do not think that is included in this one. it was cobbled together quickly, and, of course, behind closed doors. to go back to your question about speaker boehner, that is another thing -- he has attempted to do a lot of stuff in the open.
you might not like him or the things he is voting for if you are in the republican congress, but that is a positive thing for people, especially conservatives that feel left out of the process. let things get done in the open. that is worth a lot. host: mike has been waiting in misery. democratic caller. -- missouri, democratic caller. caller: raising the taxes on the rich, i think it is i'm a democrat, but i think there is a trend going on with people on welfare. no two couples, hud pays rent, they get food stamps, the husband and wife get medicaid, and they are able to work. at the end of the year, they say they worked so much, and they did income back off. i think they need to start
cracking down on the welfare programs. that would save a lot of money. host: charles hurt? guest: i think that is the primary problem the conservatives see with the set up. you're trying to fix the revenue problem, which will not be fixed by going after 2%, raising their taxes to 80% -- it will not fix the problem. the real problem is they are not cutting the government in any real way, and among the ways you cut the government is you go after programs better abuse, or worse than that, programs that create an environment where it is easier for people to give
in to dependency on the government then make hard decisions about working and things like that. helping those people find good work, not only does that say you money, but it makes them productive workers, taxpayers citizens, and a better life for everyone involved. that is how i would argue it. that is certainly not the way we are addressing this. host: the republican line. gary. virginia. caller: good morning. i would like to read a short quotation from abraham lincoln -- "you can not help the poor by destroying strengthen the
weak by weakening the strong, you cannot lift the wager by pulling down the wage payer, you cannot build character and courage by taking away people's initiative and independence, and you cannot help people permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves." president obama likens himself to abraham lincoln, but i think he needs to review this. guest: he might be familiar with that quotation, but i have not heard him use it. that was a long time ago. one of the most unseemly things about the press conference with president obama yesterday was when he talked about jacking the taxes on the wealthy, and
the people in the audience applauded. it is pitch fork-like -- how you would enjoy that some sucker in a different tax bracket has to pay more to cover your debt, it is unseemly. it is very odious. obviously, it is working for president obama. host: here is a tweet -- this half-hearted attempt to quiet the majority, does it mean tax reform is not going to happen? guest: god bless you for bringing that up. once again, we have come up with a half-measure that does not solve the problem, and most importantly, puts all the
pressure off of doing something real about, say, tax reform. there could be little pieces in this bill but they came up with, but it is certainly not to the degree speaker boehner tried with the other deal before christmas, and certainly not the really big, over-arching theme that would clear up a lot of these loopholes and make it a much more fair system. host: one thing that is included is a permanent fix to the alternative minimum tax, something bad -- that they have not been able to do. what do you make of that? guest: it is interesting. congress usually aids to permanently fix anything --
hates to permanently fix anything because as long as something is broken, they can use this distorted, sausage- making process that we have seen for a long time. i am sort of surprised by that because it runs counter to the way this place works, or maybe they are just tired of dealing with it, and talking about the amt ta is notx scary anymore. -- amt tax is not scary anymore. host: on twitter, i doubt this can pass the house. it is a sickening deal. look for more assets and jobs to leave the us. we are greece. sam, ryan chilcote among the, california. -- rancho cucamonga, california. caller: let's not forget that
vice-president dick cheney said this deficits do not matter. corporate profits are up, wages are down, so working people deserve to be paid more. as far as welfare, when you have corporate welfare, nobody seems to be upset about corporate welfare. if you're going to cut government, let's start by cutting government contracts by these over-bloated defense contractors, cut defense by 20% and have them earn their fair share. guest: it is a little over- simplified to say republicans did this themselves. the democratic congress has done more to balloon the deficit than any before, the republicans did this with wars. they were supposed to be
painless for those lucky enough to not have to fight in them. they were not paid for. i think that was disasters. republicans lost their moral standing because of that. the argument about deficits and not nattering, they do not matter when they are at a certain level, but they do matter at this level. when debt service alone takes up the majority of your general fund spending, be banned it is a calamitous -- and then it is a calamitous situation. the country and republicans as the conservative brand would be in better shape right now if they said we had to go to war in afghanistan and iraq, and
everybody is going to feel this. we will pay for it as we go. that would have been wise, the right thing and the conservative thing to do, but they did not, and people laugh at them now. the caller is able to blame it all on them, which i think is a little unfair, but they are being mocked and ridiculed host: if you are just waking up on this new year's morning, the senate, very early, around 2:00 a.m. eastern time, approved a measure. the house comes in at noon, and a vote could happen as early as this afternoon. jeff, you are on the air with charles hurt.
caller: good morning. i in a blue dog democrat, but i am a democrat. charles talked about what i was going to talk about -- two words that we spent $2 billion a week on. if we could use that money for stimulus, build schools, six bridges, get this country -- fix bridges, and get this country back to the 21st century, get the highways go in again, that would put an awful lot of people to work. if we could do that, it would definitely come rolling in for
these people that could make a decent wage on the construction side. guest: i am not a big believer. these government stimulus plans have not worked very well. republicans like them because they can give a lot of these moneys to contractors, who support them. all of that is the fairest. if you look at the stimulus programs in the last couple of years, they have not worked well, but the caller is right. if that money were in private hands, in the economy, in the hands of taxpayers, that, in my book, -- the best stimulus program is when people have money back, invest and hire people. host: there are some 2009
stimulus provisions included in this deal. extends tax cuts for the stimulus law for five years, including the child tax -- we are learning right now that the cbs news correspondent for capitol hill reports a vote could come as early as 1:00 p.m. today. guest: it is done. if the democrats get that, and a half to get 20 or 30 house republicans, i do not think it will have trouble with that. i feel pretty certain you might have a case where you have the majority of house republicans oppose this, which going back to your question about speaker
boehner, that is not a good -- host: over 100 100? guest: absolutely. i would never have predicted that, but people are anxious to get home, or whatever, they often make stupid choices. one point i wanted to go back to, one of the callers talking about corporate welfare -- the primary way corporate welfare is distributed is through these tax loopholes, and the way they are able to hide income or not paid taxes because they do certain things the government approves of. you know, if you want to do
away with corporate welfare, the primary way to do that is to reform the tax code, and as a twitter person pointed out, that is not willing to happen as part of this deal -- going to happen as part of this deal. host: richard, marietta, ga., you just heard charlie heard reacting to the news that all the democrats plan to vote for this. this could be a good deal -- done deal. caller: i do not like the sound of this being a done deal. i would like to see them take out the extension of the unemployment benefits. i know somebody that was all worked for 99 weeks, as soon as their benefits were up, they have a job. what are your thoughts on them
passing out, kicking out the unemployment extension? guest: i agree that they keep extending the unemployment benefits, and people around here, they never consider that it could lead to bad behavior, to people gaming the system, and not only is that bad for taxpayers, but it is bad for people that are allowed to do that. in this environment, this economy, these people will never man up and woman up and do that kind of thing because it would be perceived as kicking the poor. they are afraid of their own shadow. if you took a phone book and took the top 535 people out of the phone book, 90% of the
people would say we only have this much money, let's figure out how to do this, they would figure it out in about a week toward because of these people here, that never happens. host: speaking of politics, a tweet -- how will tim scott vote? not sure of the politics here. guest: they're talking about the recent appointee of nikki haley in south carolina. he strikes me as the type of person that would vote against it because he is a fairly conservative republican. host: he will be replacing jim demint in the senate, who is stepping down.
jim demint, one of three that did not vote last night. guest: i do not know if that means he was not here, or he abstained. i imagine he could not have voted to support this. host: donna, independent caller. caller: my concern is that i am basically lost in the cracks. i was a hard worker, paid my taxes, i had an accident, and now i have cancer. i get my medicare, but still i am having to pay for more insurance.
my social security check went up, but i have to pay the high price of medical care because of the bills, and it is not fair because i can not get supplemental insurance to help me pay for my disease. i do not think it is fair enough to where i am lost in the crack, and i can barely make it. all of my money goes directly to medical costs. about i'm sorry to hear that, if a tragedy, but she points out the problem. when you go after 2% of the taxpayers and small businesses to fix the problems better on our shoulders, it is picking the winners and losers. it happens on the other end as
well. when you say we will pay for unemployment insurance, all of these things, at some point you have to cut the wind off because there is not enough money to take from this side to pay for the free stuff on that side. there will always be somebody on the line like the caller, who is every bit as justified as the neighborhood who earns $10 less than hurt or whatever, but because politicians in washington are picking the winners and losers were drawing the lines, you will -- or drawing the lines, you will wind up with on fears situations, and with people who will become -- wind up with
unfair situations, and people who will become better and take it out on these people. -- they will become embittered. i look forward to that day. host: c-span democrat as this tweet -- government stimulus kept us out of the depression. guest: i do not agree with the premise that the stimulus did that. we could go through and find countless examples of where this money was wasted, or it went to people -- take for example the green energy business. you have hundreds of millions of dollars going to favored companies, favorable to the government because of their ideology and what they want to do. to look at the massive loss and
waste, and there are criminal investigations into some of these operations -- not only is it an horribly unfair way of redistributing hard-earned income, but it does not work. these companies are laying people off and shutting down, and in some cases i saw were a couple of these big companies, the chinese have come in and bought them and have taken the equipment back to china. what that amounts to is we gave china a leg up by building the company, and when it goes bankrupt we have to handed over to china, as if they do not have enough advantage is. host: chester, pa., karen. caller: happy new year, and thank you for c-span. thank you for c-span.